Calvert  News & Commentary

Global Exchanges Embracing Transparency

World Federation of Exchanges Launches ESG Working Group with Calvert Support

6/2/2014

Update to the original article posted on 3/31/14.

Calvert Investment’s applauds the London Stock Exchange joining the UN Sustainable Stock Exchange initiative. This initiative commits London Stock Exchange senior management to actively leading global discussions on how listed companies can inform institutional investors regarding their environmental, social, and governance issues with a focus on transparency of information leading to improved financial and ESG performance.

Gabriel Thoumi, CFA, Senior Sustainability Analyst at Calvert Investments can be seen third from the left in  back at the opening bell ceremony on June 2.
Gabriel Thoumi, CFA, Senior Sustainability Analyst at Calvert Investments can be seen third from the left in back at the opening bell ceremony on June 2.

Global exchanges from around the world – led by Calvert Investments and other institutional investors – are supporting the importance of information transparency as a best practice to promote cost–efficiencies in reporting, improve timeliness and consistency of reporting, and empower industry through general agreement on reporting transparency recommendations.

NASDAQ OMX led a coalition of exchanges – including CME Group Inc.; CBOE Holdings, Inc.; and IntercontinentalExchange Group, Inc. who owns the NYSE – in asking the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) to launch a new sustainability Working Group. The group is comprised of representatives from a diverse array of global exchanges. The WFE Working Group’s mandate is to build consensus regarding transparency on the reporting, purpose, practicality, and materiality of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) data

As companies and institutional investors prioritize transparency, corporate leadership regarding the disclosure of ESG has shown tremendous growth. For example, Bloomberg now notes that issuer transparency of ESG disclosure is rapidly increasing, expanding 600% since 2009 – from 1,000 to more than 6,000 companies currently.

In fact, in 2009 Forbes Magazine named exchange transparency of ESG criteria as one of the “World’s Best Sustainability Ideas”.

NGOs also support increased transparency. In 2009, the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative, and other key stakeholders launched the Sustainable Stock Exchange Initiative to support transparency for ESG-standards of exchange listed companies. In 2013, the Investor Network for Climate Risk and the signatories of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment, with industry support, launched the INCR Listing Standards Proposal: Sustainability Disclosure Listing Standards for Global Stock Exchanges. The goal of this report is to increase transparency of ESG factors by listed companies across exchanges.

Calvert has been a long-standing member of INCR’s Sustainable Stock Exchanges Working Group and continues to support collaborative investor and corporate-led efforts to promote transparency.

Finally, Calvert congratulates the global leadership of these WFE member exchanges and their client institutions for their global leadership on investor information transparency.

Mike Lombardo, Sr. Sustainability Analyst and Manger, Calvert Investments
Gabriel Thoumi, CFA, Sr. Sustainability Analyst, Calvert Investments
Evan Harvey, Managing Director, Corporate Sustainability, The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.
Carol Kennedy, Vice President of Corporate Communications, CBOE Holdings, Inc.
Kelly Loeffler, SVP Investor Relations & Corp. Communications, IntercontinentalExchange Group, Inc.
Christopher LaRosa, Executive Director, Government & Industry Association Relations, CME Group Inc.

 



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